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August 1, 2009

$100 Million Taxpayer-Money Bonus For Running Up Price Of Oil

-- by Dave Johnson

Did you read about the guy at Citigroup who is getting a $100 million bonus after Citigroup was bailed out with $45 billion of taxpayer money?

And did you read the Rolling Stone piece on Goldman Sachs, and how big Wall Street firms and their oil speculation were behind the huge runup in oil prices we saw last year.

So check out WHY the guy is getting a $100 million bonus from taxpayer money:

Mr. Hall, the 58-year-old head of Phibro, a small commodities trading firm in Westport, Conn., is due for a nine-figure payday, his cut of profits from a characteristically aggressive year of bets in the oil market.

... Regulators are pushing to curb the role of traders like Mr. Hall, whose speculation in the energy markets may have played a major role in the recent gyrations of oil prices.

"Aggressive bets on the oil market. So the guy is one of the people responsible for US having to pay so much for gas. And the guy is going to get a $100 million bonus for doing that, from OUR money! And, of course, if his big bets had failed, taxpayer dollars would be bailing the company out. Oh, wait, we're bailing them out already because of other big bets that failed...

Your tax dollars at work. But the guy needs the money. He has a lifestyle to keep up. He has "his 7,300-square-foot Greek Revival mansion" and

A few years ago, he bought a medieval castle in Germany from the neo-expressionist painter Georg Baselitz, and he and his wife have turned the property, said to contain roughly 150 rooms, into a private museum for their collection.

“He has about 4,000 pieces in what could easily be described as one of the world’s finest collections of contemporary art,” said a New York dealer, Mary Boone. It includes pieces by Andy Warhol, David Salle, Bruce Nauman and Julian Schnabel.


By the way, if taxes at the top were back to 90% this guy would STILL get $10 million of his bonus.

Posted by Dave Johnson at August 1, 2009 1:25 PM


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